Nominations for 2021 will open in May 2021 and be due in July 2021.


ASHE awards are intended to recognize exemplary achievements and contributions to the study of higher education through research, leadership, or service to ASHE and the field of higher education. The ASHE membership plays an essential role in identifying persons who should be honored by the Association, so please give each award your thoughtful consideration. It is not necessary to present every award every year, but there are undoubtedly individuals deserving of recognition in each of the following categories:

ASHE Distinguished Service Award 

Presented in recognition of exceptional commitment to ASHE and significant contribution to its success.

Bobby Wright Dissertation of the Year Award
The award recognizes exemplary dissertation(s) in the field of higher education. Award criteria include the high quality of the methodology employed and the significance of the dissertation topic.

CAHEP Barbara Townsend Lecture
Barbara Townsend served as the ASHE Executive Director and on many other committees, to improve the study of higher education for her higher education colleagues. Barbara was particularly well known for her research on community colleges, feminist studies, doctoral education, and higher education programs. CAHEP welcomes nominations for a lecture and lecturer that focus on community colleges, feminist studies, doctoral education, and/or higher education programs.

CIHE Award for Significant Research on International Higher Education
This award recognizes a highly significant research outcome in the field of international higher education. Unlike a lifetime achievement award, or an award that focuses on a particular form of research (e.g., a dissertation award), the CIHE Research Award is focused on recognizing a current contribution to state-of-the-art knowledge and scholarship, whether it is manifested in a journal article, book, edited volume, research initiative, or other top quality contribution which significantly changed the existing thinking on a topic in the field.

CEP Founders' Service Award
This award recognizes two members of the ASHE community who have served CEP in various capacities over the years. Service is defined as activity which supports CEP and/or fosters inclusiveness in ASHE.

CEP Mildred García Award for Exemplary Scholarship
This award recognizes one junior, nontenured scholar-practitioner (e.g., visiting assistant professor, clinical assistant professor, or tenure-track faculty) and one senior practitioner-scholar (i.e., tenured associate or full professor, senior/executive administrator) for seminal, exemplary scholarship that focuses on research and issues specifically related to underrepresented populations of color.

CPPHE Excellence in Public Policy Award
This award recognizes excellence in work at the nexus of academic scholarship and policy practice in the field of public policy and higher education. Both individuals and organizations are eligible for nomination. 

Howard Bowen Distinguished Career Award 
Presented to an individual whose professional life has been devoted in substantial part to the study of higher education and whose career has significantly advanced the field through extraordinary scholarship, leadership and service. The award is usually presented at, or near, the time of the individual's retirement.

Leadership Award 
Given for outstanding leadership in advancing the study of higher education. This award recognizes individuals who bring visibility and support to the field of higher education by demonstrating the contributions of the study of higher education to policy formation, or in gaining substantial resources for research and training in higher education.

Mentoring Award 
This award honors the noteworthy contributions in mentoring developing scholars in the Association. Recipients of the award will have made extraordinary and sustained contributions to the professional and scholarly development of emerging scholars in ASHE and in the field of higher education. We seek nominations for productive scholars with a tireless dedication in pursing the best interests for the future of ASHE.

Outstanding Book Award
This award recognizes a book that has significantly contributed to the study and scholarship of higher education. Books published with a 2018 or 2019 copyright date will be considered.

Presidential Medal
The ASHE Presidential Medal will be presented to an individual of the current president’s choice at the ASHE Annual Meeting awards ceremony each year. The recipient can be a mentor, colleague, research collaborator, or someone else in higher education whom the outgoing president deems worthy of public acknowledgment.

Promising Scholar/Early Career Award
This award is given for a significant body of scholarship or a single extraordinary research achievement by a higher education scholar, and in recognition of potential for future research. This award may also call attention to significant work in progress that has won praise from senior colleagues and support from foundations or government agencies. The Early Career Award is reserved for individuals who are no more than six years beyond the receipt of the doctoral degree.

Research Achievement Award 
Presented for outstanding contribution to research to an individual whose published work (theoretical, empirical or applied) advances understanding of higher education in a significant way. The Research Achievement Award may acknowledge a body of research or a single piece of meritorious research.

Special Merit Award 
Presented to a person, group, or organization in recognition of distinctive support for the purposes and goals of ASHE. This award may be presented to an influential academic leader or a scholar outside the field of higher education who has offered a valuable perspective for studying and understanding colleges and universities.